The News
The News
Sunday 20 of September 2020

From Wembley to Havana


Mick Jagger of the Rolling Stones is seen on a giant screen as he performs during a free outdoor concert at Ciudad Deportiva de la Habana sports complex in Havana,photo: Reuters/Ueslei Marcelino
Mick Jagger of the Rolling Stones is seen on a giant screen as he performs during a free outdoor concert at Ciudad Deportiva de la Habana sports complex in Havana,photo: Reuters/Ueslei Marcelino
Revolutions forget that each and every human being needs to make their own revolution

In 1973, at the Wembley Empire Pool in London, I had the opportunity to attend my first Rolling Stones concert.

Mick Jagger jumped up and down during his interpretation of “Jumping Jack Flash” and “Satisfaction,” showing signs of the generation that he belonged to and searching for our own revolution, the same one that arrived in the form of music, freedom, sex and drugs.

When Fidel Castro condemned pop and rock, he did so following the mistaken Moscow Kremlin and other communist countries, because the old revolutionaries, with Castro at the front, never understood that every generation needs its revolution.

And for them the revolution was made up of blows, national dignity and changing the system. For those who went crazy over “Paint it Black” in Havana, their revolution is the most beautiful of all because it goes beyond peace, equality and legality. What Thomas Jefferson wrote in the U.S. Declaration of Independence about the “pursuit of happiness,” reminds us of the importance of searching for joy.

Having a personal project for happiness is the best revolution of all. But many times, revolutions forget that each and every human being needs to make their own revolution.

What happened the other night in Havana, with a Mick Jagger that continued to jump around and who sounds forever young, is a nostalgic gesture to history. Because, after so much darkness, coldness and tension, and after so much dialogue between capitalism and communism, at the end of the day ― as Jefferson imagined ― we all have a revolution that consists in the pursuit of happiness.

Now things are changing in Cuba, where the Castro’s need to be recognized for their ability to die with dignity.

Things are changing in the world, because all of the old clichés have been knocked down like communist walls and capitalist towers.

Things are changing because a concert is capable of turning into a significant political act, after the wink that Barack Obama gives to history.

And finally, things are also changing because not even the power of Northern imperialism had enough strength to prevent a president ― in the last stretch of his term ― from building a discourse, despite the fears of Cubans and U.S. citizens, which ended by giving a huge leap in history, that brings us the satisfaction of being able to build new hope for the future yet to come.